Speaking in an interview with France Football, Celtic’s latest French signing, central defender Christopher Jullien, discussed the move and his first impressions ahead of tonight’s clash in the Europa League with Rennes.
On having Ligue 1 interest:
There were some clubs who were interested, but I think that Toulouse made it clear that the price they wanted was too high for some Ligue 1 clubs… I did my time at Toulouse.
On choosing Celtic:
It was a logical choice. And a good choice for the moment. After Toulouse, it is an additional step, with the aim of growing, notably through participating in European competition. They had me visit the facilities and the club. That made the difference. It is a big institution in football, which is not only admired by the English clubs. The desire is to perform here. There are always people in the stands, which is normal for a big club I want to settle well and be effective. Yes, the Premier League has always been an aim of mine, a dream, that’s for sure. But today, I took a path that will enable me to grow no matter what. We never know what the future holds.
On the aura at Celtic:
There is a lot of things to say… It is immense. Everything that the club does for Scotland, for their supporters. The impact that Celtic has is incredible. Everyday I am surprised by certain things, the stadium, the fans… To live through that is already super cool. In France, we are not aware of that. So when you are living it, it becomes huge. I knew that I wanted to go a step up, but I did not expect it to be like this. I am learning everyday about the extent to which the club has a reputation and a history of titles that make a difference. In the streets, I cannot walk (without someone coming up to him)! That, when you are in France, is not even a thing.
On Celtic Park:
It is truly incredible. The atmosphere, it is really something. My first “You’ll never walk alone,” was I think in the first round of qualifying for the Champions’ League. I was on the bench. When you play, you don’t hear it as much. But when you are on the bench, you edge out a bit and you hear it. It is cool to experience. The atmosphere is incredible. When I bring my friends, they tell me that it is like night and day in comparison with Toulouse. Toulouse, they have a good stadium, with good fans, but it is not a stadium with this impact. It is different. When you come from Toulouse to hear, it is a bit of a strange feeling.
On his first Old Firm:
Now that… Honestly. I don’t know how to describe it. It is incredible to live through! The atmosphere… in the dressing room, you feel the tension. You walk onto the pitch with legs trembling. With anticipation to play the match. You can see it in the supporters. The week before, we had a European cup match, but I would see the supporters in town who would basically say: “Screw Europe, we want the weekend match!” On top of that, we played very well, we put in a complete shift. It was truly fantastic. At the end, as well, I was made man of the match. We got to stay on the pitch for another hour afterwards to celebrate with the fans. In the dressing room too, it was great. The squad is cool. With the French guys, we succeed in mixing well. I have struck it off really well with a lot of people.